was born in Leningrad, Russia in 1960. He attended a special
English school from the age of seven to 17 and began painting
in high school at the age of 14.
the University of Leningrad where his chosen field of study
and degree was in Geophysics. His specialty was the Aurora
Borealis, which may have been the result of his life-long
obsession for light.
During his college
years, Volkov attended night drawing classes at The Academy
of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg, one of the most prestigious
learning facilities in the world. He considered entering the
Academy, but under the old regime in Russia one painted "Socialist
Realism" or nothing at all. Volkov refused to be told
what and how to paint, so he began working with underground
artists groups and developed his own amazingly unique
was changed forever when he met a young American girl in 1987
in St Petersburg and married in 1988. After moving to the
United States, he has lived in Holland Township, New Jersey,
for 11 years, where he and his wife Barbara are raising their
three children Alice, Peter, and Nicolas.
first eight years in America were not happy ones. Always dreaming
of earning a living as an artist, he taught high school to
support his family. He painted evenings, weekends, holidays
and began showing in a few small local galleries. But it wasnt
enough. The pressures of teaching stifled his creativity and
a great frustration overcame him. Then his life changed course
again when he decided to visit Carmel, California. A gallery
director there recognized his extraordinary talent and his
career as an artist finally began.
Virtually a self-taught
artist, Volkov said, "We really teach ourselves. If you
want to learn, you will always find someone to learn from,
be they dead or alive, great or unknown. You learn from everything
you see and hear around you if you are willing to pay
attention. Perhaps, during my forming years, I have made a
lot of unnecessary mistakes, but at the same time I have had
the enormous advantage of picking my own teachers."
And so they were:
William Turner, Vermeer, Franz Hals, Rembrandt, and many others
from the previous centuries as well as Edward Hopper, Maxwell
Parrish and Andrew Wyeth of the 20th century. There was also
Beethoven and Satie, Nabokov and Steinbeck, Einstein and Tarkovsky.
They were school and university friends, physics professors
and struggling artists.
all taught me something how to see, how to hear, how
to understand things and, most importantly, how to understand
myself. I cannot separate any one of their voices from the
voice which I hear inside of me and which has become my own
Combining a lifelong
fascination with architecture, landscape and still-life subjects,
Volkov brings drama and poetic expression into his work. With
his unique vision, he merges mood and atmosphere, evoking
powerful emotions that create harmony.
no greater mystery to me than the conflict of light and dark.
In the way they clash and penetrate each other, there is the
source of everything. Whether I paint a landscape, a still-life
or a portrait, within it there is always a story of light
travelling through darkness.
Volkovs success are patrons Marty and Diane Herman of
Exposures Gallery in Sedona. "Marty and Diane have a
love for art and the artists they represent." Volkovs
collection can be seen at Exposures International Gallery
of Fine Art in Sedona, Arizona, 561 Hwy. 179, 520-282-1125.